Suns vs. Raptors Pick NBA – January 22nd

The Utah Jazz handled their business with relative ease at home last night and dispatched the Pacers (the worst ATS road team in the NBA) to grant us a sixth straight NBA winner and to push the record to 10-1 ATS over the last 11 plays.   And while we had a good night, DeMarcus Cousins definitely did NOT.  The Kings oft-frustrated big man walked off the court screaming at referees after a loss yet again.

What made Cousin’s situation unique last night was the he was absolutely correct.  That was a bad foul call bailing out Wade after he basically just missed a dunk.  In the end, the Kings lost their fifth straight to fall 2.5 games out of the final playoff spot and just two games ahead of the worst record in the Western Conference – it’s a wacky year for sure…

There’s not a ton of NBA high-quality action today, and most of it is early to make way for NFL Final Four Sunday, but here is my favorite play on the board as we go for a seventh straight W.

Today’s Free Pick:

Phoenix Suns at Toronto Raptors -12

The Raps, while in no jeopardy of damaging their playoff positioning yet, have hit a real malaise.  They’ve dropped two in a row in uninspired fashion and are just 5-5 over their last ten games.  They missed a real opportunity to make up some ground and put some standings pressure on Cleveland, but they do get to return home tonight which is always a nice ingredient when trying to snap a funk.

Meanwhile Phoenix is both tied for the worst record in the conference and just four and a half games out of the playoffs.  As we mentioned above with the Kings – it’s going to be a wacky few months as teams try to decide if they are willing to sacrifice their ping-pong balls for the chance to be decimated by the Golden State Warriors in Round One…

But for Phoenix, there have been some real signs of progress.  They are 4-4 SU in their last eight games and beat Toronto at home less than a month ago.  They have the nice win over San Antonio in Mexico City and were very competitive in both their losses to the Cavs as well as their loss to Utah.  In fact, Phoenix is 6-2 ATS in their last eight games.

If you are looking for a secondary bet or trend, both teams have a proclivity for the OVER.  Phoenix has gone OVER in 5 of 6, Toronto in 12 of their last 16.  SO it is fair to expect some points tonight in Toronto.

But I’ll go with the Suns keeping things competitive long enough to cover the dozen points.  They’ve fared well in similar spots lately against Cleveland and Utah, so I don’t see any reason they can’t do the same again tonight.  Phoenix has covered their last five games against the Raps – I’ll look for a half dozen tonight.

Free Pick:  Phoenix Suns +12

Chris Scheeren / Author